Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Too Cute Not to Toot!

Lets start right out with an advent idea that is very original and would be fun to do in a few years.  It is all based on an idea from Chica and Jo and is based on the book "How the Grinch Stole Christmas".

This next idea is just that - more of idea then a Craft but I love it and it would be a great thing to do along with reading "The Polar Express".  Check out this great plan for surprising the kids with a "golden ticket" to go see Christmas lights from Confessions of a Homeschooler.  (We don't have a mini-van but I don't think the kids would notice that for quite a while LOL)
Here's another book idea - this one is from 1+1+1=1 and is for the book "The Mitten".  This book was not in our original list of 24 but, I may use it especially since she created adorable printables to go along with the story. 
There are tons of really cute snack ideas out and about in blog land but this one was too cute not to post and is so original.  There is a full tutorial over at Comfy in the Kitchen

A blog that I used to follow a lot, A Bowl Full of Lemons, recently added a "Free Printables" section to her blog.  This is a place where people can link up free printables but the best part is that it isn't just a weekly linky party - it is something she is keeping up all the time so you can just search there.  I like that it is in one place (I should say I don't follow her as much as I used to because her family did a huge cross-country move and she doesn't post like she used to due her schedule)

2 Teaching Mommies have a few printable packs created for the holiday season.  These are great not only for working with kids at home but also for Sunday School or even in your classroom.  The first one is their Nativity Pack.
There is also a Christmas Symbols  pack as well
One more - a pack on Christmas Trees.  I also want to add that if you go to her site by clicking on any of these links and then look both before and after the dates of these posts, you'll find other items including coloring books you can print and some great nativity ideas.

I don't know about you, but every year I say "Next year, I'm going to wrap up the gifts REALLY nicely in a great theme."  Then "next year" rolls around and just slap gift wrap on the gifts once again!  Well, I saw this idea over at Allora Handmade and just think it is too adorable.  I might skip the newspaper and just get a solid paper - like maybe red - but I love the twine and the monograms!

This next idea is one of those "simple" ideas but I love the perfect tutorial from Confessions of a Homeschooler.  She shares how to make a no-sew fleece blanket.  Josh received one as a gift when he was a baby and I've been meaning to make Nate one but I really need great instructions before I conquer anything.  This tutorial is perfect. 
This next idea is actually from an Etsy Shop called The Wright Wreath.  I love the colors and, I have seen tutorials for this type of wreath in the past.  BUT the best part is if you really love it, and don't want to make it, you could buy it LOL 
Another wreath idea that comes with a great tutorial comes from Little Birdies Secret.  I love that it is made from scrapbook paper and is something that older kids could help with or even create on their own.

When I read this post by I Heart Crafty Things I had to save it just for the reminder about this book that looks so adorable.  I will be ordering this one for the boys - maybe for Easter :-) (I know, I know - it isn't even Christmas but I'm DONE shopping so this has to wait!)

 Another book idea, this one about Rudolph!  This are adorable puppets from I heart Crafty Things! too!

Last week I shared some links from Sassy Sites.  She is doing huge link-up parties on specific Christmas topics.  This one relates to decorating outside.  Every Christmas I think about what I want to do but it is too late to prepare and get what I need so I say "next year".  Well, this time, I'm making reminders already of what I need to start doing in JUNE to get ready for Christmas.  That way we can make the outdoor stuff I want to make while it is warm and we can budget for other things.  This link-up should offer great inspiration too!
This is another list of great ideas from Sassy Sites but this one is for all kinds of snowman Ides.  I'm actually reserving these ideas for our January activities.  I'm sure I can find lots of inspiration :-)

Pinterest Challenge!

I know it is hard to believe but I actually did complete a couple of things from my boards on Pinterest . .. well it was kind of easy since I had a birthday party and Christmas to make things for, right?

Just check out the recent Birthday Party Post to see all kinds of inspired things.  From the cake to the huge caterpillar hanging from the ceiling, to the free printables and food ideas.  I really used Pinterest to my advantage for that party!

One other idea that I used.  I LOVE Christmas cards.  I love receiving them; I love reading them; I love sending them; I have never figured out a way to hang them.  I went looking on pinterest for all kinds of ideas.  Like This One
: I like the idea but . . . I don't really have anywhere to put it.  We don't have an entrance table or a coffee table to set it on plus I like to put the photo cards in our holiday scrapbook. 

So then there was this idea

Again, really cute but I don't really have a mantel or even a wall to hang this up on . . .so it just wasn't going to work.

Then I saw this idea from Budget Wise Home and new it would work perfectly in our home.
I love that I can use my cupboards, which are usually bare during the holidays, as they are all year, so it is the perfect place to display the cards.  I added some ribbon and it really made them look nice.  Here is my version:
I will do a couple of things differently next year - I like the solid red ribbon in the inspiration photo but I didn't want to spend money so I used what I had which was some thicker, wired ribbon.  It has not wanted to stay up well due to the weight of the ribbon.  I will buy the plastic, red ribbon next year to use.  Also, I only did ribbon on 4 of the doors (because that is all I had) it looks nice and very intentional.  I've run out of ribbon to hang cards on (which is good thing!) so next year I will make sure to do all of the cupboards.

At this point, I highly doubt I will get anything done over Christmas weekend so there will most likely NOT be a post of this type next week but I already have my next projects picked out!